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Susie Leiper

It was a Chinese Ming dynasty woodblock-printed book that first attracted Susie to the idea of making a book: its concertina format so ideal for display, its page design so different from that of a western book, the whole enclosed in covers of silk and tucked into a slipcase. This book was a tactile, beautiful object. From imitations of such books, to infinite variations on the concertina and other formats, Susie makes one-off books featuring abstract mountain landscapes, poetry and calligraphy, that sit comfortably among her large oil paintings and works on Chinese paper.

Susie’s passion for all things Chinese grew out of a spell in Hong Kong and an editorial career in books on Chinese art and archaeology. A graduate of St Andrews and the Courtauld Institute of Art, she completed her formal training in calligraphy under artist Donald Jackson. Solo shows: The Living Mountain (2015), The One Life (2012) and The Word on Wood  (2011), Open Eye Gallery, Edinburgh. Selected group shows: 35 Years of the Open Eye Gallery (2016); 26 Words, London (2013); Paper Page Process, Patriothall Gallery, Edinburgh (2012); Words Set Free, London, Sunderland, Bruges (2012 – 13); Celebrate Calligraphy, London, Sunderland, Halifax (2011 – 12); The Wych Elm Project, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh (2009); The Saint John’s Bible, V&A, London (2006): RSA, VAS and SSA Annual Exhibitions (various, 2006 – 16). Awards include the ECA Library Prize (RSA, 2015), the Morton Fraser Award (VAS, 2013) and the Nancy Graham Memorial Book Award (VAS, 2011). Susie’s work is held in the collections of the British Museum; Edinburgh College of Art – University of Edinburgh; Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge; National Library of Scotland; National Museums of Scotland; and the Royal Collection. Susie is a Fellow of the Society of Scribes and Illuminators and is based in Edinburgh.

Susie is available for commission.

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